Archive for March 10, 2011

Smart meters and the news: How USA Today feeds fear, misses context

On March 9 USA Today published this story: Could smart meters be a dumb idea? It reports — as if it were fresh news — customer complaints in Portland, Maine; Dallas, Texas; and even Bakersfield, California.

This story misses the mark on two important facts:

  1. The number of US installed smart meters is actually over 18 million. USA Today story reported a 3 million DOE figure, which is merely those subsidized by DOE grants (as I noted last year).
  2. USA Today incorrectly claimed that a customer lawsuit halted smart meter installations in Bakersfield.

My biggest concern about this story — and a similar NY Times story published last month — is their potential to sow public confusion by presenting all sources as equal…

Full story: Smart meters and the news: In the absence of information, people fear the worst

 

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March 10, 2011 at 12:16 am


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